After decades of having its validity as a “sport” mocked and questioned, the modern version of golf undoubtedly demands a high level of fitness and athleticism from the sport’s greatest players. Sure, being an accurate iron player and great putter will allow a player to tread water on the professional level but in order to win and compete with consistency today’s professional golfer must be powerful and fit. In recent years, the fitness secrets of golf’s greatest players have started to trickle down to the average golfer.
Never before has there been such an abundance of golf-centric fitness and wellness information available to us weekend warriors. From golf workout programs, to flexibility exercises for golf, to custom nutrition plans and exercises for golfers, the golf fitness and wellness landscape is constantly evolving. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the latest trends in golf fitness and wellness.
Functional, Mobility, and Flexibility Exercises for Golf
Many of the best exercises for golf are found in the realm of functional, mobility and flexibility training. Functional training is a type of exercise that focuses on movements that mimic everyday activities, in this case the golf swing. For golfers, functional training can help improve strength, flexibility, and balance, which are all important for the sport. No matter their age or skill level, the golf swing requires the player to make a rotational movement in order to propel the ball forward. Exercises for golfers looking to enhance their rotational capabilities could include movements like medicine ball throws, cable rotations, and band rotations. In each instance, the movement challenges the individual to engage their stabilizer/core muscles through resistance while making a rotational movement.
Mobility training focuses on improving a golfer’s range of motion and flexibility. Exercises for golfer’s flexibility and mobility can help improve the player’s swing and, more importantly, prevent injury. Some examples of the best exercises for a golfer’s flexibility and mobility include hip rotations, hip thrusts, hip bridges, shoulder stretches, and spinal twists.
Yoga has quickly gained popularity in the world of golf fitness and is viewed as one of the best flexibility exercises for golf. Yoga can help improve flexibility, balance, strength and mental focus. Golfers can benefit from yoga poses that focus on opening the hips, poses that improve balance and focus, and poses that challenge full body strength. There are many forms of yoga and incorporating any of them to a golf workout program would be beneficial.
Strength and High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
Strength training and High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) have become increasingly popular forms of exercise for golfers in recent years. Today, you’ll find the game’s longest hitters incorporating a variety of squat and deadlift movements into their golf workout programs. While very important to learn proper form before incorporating into your golf workout program, squats, deadlifts and other strength training exercises can help your game in the long run.
HIIT involves short bursts of intense exercise, followed by periods of rest. It’s one of the best exercises for golfers looking to improve their cardiovascular fitness, as well as burn fat. For golfers, HIIT can help improve endurance and stamina, which comes in handy on a grueling hot day or over several days of competition.
Data Tracking and Nutrition
Adjacent to many of the best exercises for golf is an entire field of data tracking and nutrition science that’s helping golfers perform, train and recover better than ever. In terms of data tracking, wearable technology has become extremely popular in the world of golf fitness. Today’s fitness trackers and smartwatches are helping golfers track their activity levels, monitor their health vitals, and gauge their rest and recovery metrics. Golfers are using this data to better understand when and how to train at their best.
Long gone are the days of the John Daly nutrition plan on the golf course. Cigarettes and sodas aren’t going to cut it anymore (unless you’re John Daly, of course). Golfers are more dialed in than ever on what they put in their bodies both on and off the course. Watch any professional round and you’ll see players pulling healthy snacks and drinks from their bags to fuel their play.
Golf Workout Programs are Here to Stay
Fitness and wellness have become almost mandatory for golfers of all levels to achieve sustained success and improvement. As the sport continues to evolve, so will golf workout programs and what’s considered the best exercises for golf. By incorporating some of these trends, even just a simple series of mobility and flexibility exercises for golf, players can improve their performance on the course and stay injury-free.
20-year corporate professional that caught the golf bug in college thanks to a local muni that was free for students and haven’t looked back since. I’m a 9-handicap that can deliver birdies and double bogeys with equal flair. Long off the tee and a mess around the greens. Chasing down my golf bucket list one trip at a time and sharing insights at https://yourgolfspot.com